‘The Queen’s Gambit’ Star Anya Taylor-Joy Revealed She Was Bullied as a Child: ‘I Used To Get Locked in Lockers’

by Jeremy Spirogis
Anya Taylor-Joy of

The new Netflix hit The Queen’s Gambit not too long ago set a document with 62 million households viewing the sequence. Based on the novel of the identical identify, the storyline follows chess prodigy Beth Harmon, an orphan scuffling with emotional and substance abuse points whereas making an attempt to develop into the world’s first feminine champion chess participant.

Anya Taylor-Joy leads the present within the starring function. Some could acknowledge her from earlier movies together with Emma, Glass, and The Witch. The rising star claimed she’s needed to be an actor since she was a toddler, the place she has some sad recollections from her college days.

Anya Taylor-Joy of 'The Queen's Gambit'
Anya Taylor-Joy of ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ | Jacopo Raule/Getty Images

Anya Taylor-Joy thought of herself ‘the first ugly Emma’

Despite being found at 16 by the identical modeling scout who noticed Kate Moss, Taylor-Joy doesn’t think about herself engaging. Describing herself as something however fairly, the actor revealed she doesn’t like seeing herself on the massive display.

“I have never and I don’t think I will ever think of myself as beautiful,” she advised The Sun in November 2020. “I don’t think I’m beautiful enough to be in films. It sounds pathetic… but I just think I’m weird-looking. I won’t go to the cinema to watch my own film, I’ll watch it before. The beauty of being in your own skin is that you don’t have to look at your own face.”

Starring within the title function of the Jane Austen traditional Emma, Taylor-Joy recalled her anxiousness on taking part in the character she felt was out of her attain.

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“I genuinely had a panic attack on Emma because I thought, ‘I am the first ugly Emma and I can’t do this’,” the Netflix star defined. “The first line in the movie is, ‘I’m handsome, clever and rich’. ”

‘I was so lonely as a kid’

Telling her dad and mom she needed to behave when she was simply 6 years outdated, Taylor-Joy and her household moved from Buenos Aires to London when she was 8. The Peaky Blinders star discovered the transition tough as a result of vastly completely different setting and international language.

“Argentina is all green and I had horses and animals everywhere,” Taylor-Joy stated. “All of a sudden I was in a big city and didn’t speak the language. I didn’t really feel like I fitted in anywhere. I was too English to be Argentine, too Argentine to be English, too American to be anything.”

Taylor-Joy turned a goal for bullying from different youngsters at school, inflicting her to isolate from others.

“The kids just didn’t understand me in any shape or form,” she revealed. “I used to get locked in lockers. I spent a lot of time in school crying in bathrooms; I was so lonely as a kid.”

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Anya Taylor-Joy pertains to Beth Harmon’s ‘sense of loneliness’

Because of her exclusion by her classmates, Taylor-Joy was usually on her personal.

“I felt so isolated that I created this story in my head about lonely was bad, being alone was bad,” The Witch star shared. “That can be quite an impactful feeling, especially if you’ve taught yourself to fear it.”

Her previous experiences drew her to the character of Beth Harmon, the place she learn the e-book in simply 90 minutes and instantly linked with the troubled chess participant.

“I felt like I could really understand that sense of loneliness,” Taylor-Joy remarked. “And just trying so desperately to make sense of a world that didn’t come naturally to Beth and that dependency on chess.”

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Finding similarities between herself and Beth, the Thoroughbreds star knew the character was one she may totally embrace.

“She comes from a background where every person she has ever met has let her down in some way, or ­abandoned her,” Taylor-Joy stated. “She doesn’t trust people, and so she’s desperately trying to find a place to fit in. And as a kid I certainly had elements of that, so I was obsessed with her pretty immediately.”

The Queen’s Gambit is now streaming on Netflix.

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